Super Rugby

Clinical Crusaders edge profligate Hurricanes

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Crusaders edge Hurricanes 21-24 in a fast and furious Super Rugby Pacific clash at Sky Stadium, Wellington.

The Crusaders won a high octane New Zealand derby against the Hurricanes in a thrilling Super Rugby contest at the Cake Tin.

The Kiwi contest had it all as the sides shared six tries in another southern hemisphere classic clash.

Scott Robertson’s men took their chances, scoring four times. Conversely, Jason Holland’s spirited side could only score twice when they really should have scored more.

The home team were the architects of their own demise. If you don’t take your chances against a championship outfit like the Crusaders, don’t expect to win.

There are no gimmes. Not at this level. Not against the clinical beast from Canterbury.

Will Jordan, Quinten Strange, George Bridge, and Ethan Blackadder scored for the 10-time champions, who should have had more but for handling mistakes.

Richie Mo’unga had a shaky day from the tee, kicking two conversions. His counterpart Jordie Barrett had a better day.

Barrett landed three penalties and one conversion for 11 points, missing once.

Du’Plessis Kirifi and Josh Moorby added tries for the hosts.

The frenetic finale ends in disappointment for Hurricanes as Crusaders make it 13 wins from 14 Super Rugby matches

With time up on the clock, Cullen Grace played the ball on the ground to allow the Hurricanes a chance to level and take the game into Golden Point extra time.

Canes skipper Ardie Savea decided to go for an attacking lineout instead of giving Jordie Barrett a shot at goal.

The call, though brave, was the wrong one. The Crusaders’ Scott Barrett contested the set-piece, which was in turn, brought down by Jason Holland’s men.

The ball did not come out of the ruck, and referee James Doleman blew for full time.

Savea and his charges were not happy, but they had their chance and did not take it.

The Hurricanes’ woes continue against the Crusaders, a team that gives them nightmares, and one they cannot beat

The Wellington side has not beaten the Christchurch club since 2018 and has now lost 10 of their previous 11 Super Rugby matches, and the last four at home to the red machine.

Another deserved victory sends the tournament’s most successful side top of the standings, while a third defeat in a row keeps the Hurricanes in eighth.

Jordie Barrett kicked a 45th-minute penalty to edge the Hurricanes 18-17 ahead of the Crusaders at halftime.

An entertaining first stanza saw the two teams trade blows as they notched five tries between them in a high-tempo New Zealand derby.

This was a see-sawing Super Rugby match, the lead changed hands six times in the first period alone.

Jordan, Strange, and Bridge crossed for the visitors, while Kirifi and Moorby dotted down for the hosts.

Barrett’s boot was the difference as he knocked over a couple of penalties and one conversion.

Mo’unga, on the other hand, struggled with his kicking out of hand and the tee.

The first five-eighth missed two conversions to Barrett’s one as the Canes took a slender one-point lead into the shed.

A low-scoring second stanza was jam-packed with drama despite only one try being scored by the Crusaders

The lead continued to change hands after the restart, with 10-points coming inside seven minutes after the break.

That was, however, in bizarre circumstance, the end of the scoring of a game that should have had more five-pointers.

Barrett added an early second-half penalty, but Blackadder’s soft try a minute later, edged the Crusaders back in front.

Mo’unga could not miss this time, increasing the Saders’ advantage to three.

Both teams had their chances. A poor pass by Jamie Booth killed a good chance, while a poor handling error from Cam Roigard cost the Canes points.

The Hurricanes were hanging on, they could not find any points, and the Crusaders began to turn the screw.

Codie Taylor thought he had scored after a scintillating counter-attack from the Crusaders’ 22.

The move was started by Mo’unga and Sevu Reece, involving several players, but the ball was knocked on before Taylor dived over the line.

With five minutes remaining, Tom Christie went over in the corner.

The try, however, was chalked off by the TMO because of Ricky Jackson’s knock-on under the posts in the buildup.

Grace’s indiscretion at the ruck gave Barrett a chance to level. Wild scenes saw the home team’s players looking to the bench for instructions.

Savea bravely decided to go for the win, but a poor maul ended any hope of a rare victory over Robertson’s juggernaut.

Final Score: Hurricanes 21 (18) Crusaders 24 (17)

Scorers

Hurricanes
Tries – Kirifi, Moorby
Pen – J. Barrett (3)
Con – J. Barrett
Drop –
Cards –

Crusaders
Tries – Jordan, Strange, Bridge, Blackadder
Pen –
Con – Mo’unga (2)
Drop –
Cards –

Match Officials
Referee: James Doleman
Assistant Ref 1: Brendon Pickerill
Assistant Ref 2: Dan Waenga
TMO: Chris Hart

Teams

Hurricanes: 15 Josh Moorby, 14 Julian Savea, 13 Billy Proctor, 12 Jordie Barrett, 11 Wes Goosen, 10 Jackson Garden-Bachop, 9 Jamie Booth, 8 Ardie Savea (captain), 7 Du’Plessis Kirifi, 6 Te Kamaka Howden, 5 Scott Scrafton, 4 James Blackwell, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 2 James O’Reilly, 1 Pouri Rakete-Stones.

Replacements: 16 Kianu Kereru-Symes, 17 Pasilio Tosi, 18 Tevita Mafileo, 19 Caleb Delany, 20 Devan Flanders, 21 Cam Roigard, 22 Bailyn Sullivan, 23 Ruben Love.

Crusaders: 15 Will Jordan, 14 Sevu Reece, 13 Braydon Ennor, 12 David Havili, 11 George Bridge, 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Mitchell Drummond, 8 Cullen Grace, 7 Tom Christie, 6 Ethan Blackadder, 5 Quinten Strange, 4 Scott Barrett (captain), 3 Fletcher Newell, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Joe Moody.

Replacements
: 16 Ricky Jackson, 17 George Bower, 18 Tamaiti Williams, 19 Zach Gallagher, 20 Corey Kellow, 21 Bryn Hall, 22 Fergus Burke, 23 Leicester Fainga’anuku.

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  1. Pingback: Clinical Crusaders edge profligate Hurricanes - Super Rugby Pacific - Daily Post Central

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